Questions tagged [mathematics]

This tag is for questions on the usage and meaning of mathematical terminology and the names for mathematical entities in English.

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26
votes
4answers
9k views

Do digits after the decimal point have a specific name?

I would like to know if there's a name for "digits after the decimal point" (in only one or two words). For instance in french these digits are called "décimales". I've found "decimal places", but I ...
19
votes
3answers
2k views

What do I call the ′ in mathematical formulae?

As in x′ = x + t "Ex (?) equals ex plus tee". In Russian it is called "штрих" (shtrikch).
19
votes
2answers
6k views

How to read this formula aloud: “f(x) = x²”?

f(x) = x2 Having heard this read only in Korean, I don’t know how to read it in English. What is the right English reading?
19
votes
8answers
7k views

Which way: One and one ARE two? One and one IS two?

Which verb is grammatically correct when used to describe addition? One and one are two. One and one is two.
18
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5answers
7k views

How do you read these mathematical expressions aloud?

(both above are from Wikipedia.org)
15
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3answers
3k views

Multiplication: names of some mathematical symbols

As far as I know, in Italian mathematics books, the symbol for multiplication can take several forms: B × 3 B · 3 B * 3 (rare) I'm not sure of having ever seen case 3 in English books, ...
14
votes
2answers
13k views

What is a third of a circle or a third of a plane called?

There is a word for a quarter of a circle or a plane: "quadrant". What is the corresponding word for a third of a circle? "tridrant" or "terdrant" or something different?
13
votes
2answers
5k views

How would people use “cherry-pick”?

I found an example using the word, "cherry-pick": In this era of post-truth politics, it's easy to cherry-pick data and come to whatever conclusion you desire. Is it a positive term? Is it ...
12
votes
1answer
3k views

What is the name of this mathematical symbol in English?

The symbol looks like a mirrored capitalized E. Because I don't know its name, I cannot Google for it.
11
votes
2answers
6k views

How do you read the number 1.5?

How should you read the number 1.5? Should I read it as one and half or one and a half Any help would be appreciated.
9
votes
6answers
4k views

“Minus” a logarithm

I have to explain in words this formula: A = -log(X) My guesses would be either: A is the minus logarithm of X A is minus the logarithm of X Is one of these expressions, or yet another one, ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

“… is called Minkowski space” or “is called the Minkowski space” and WHY?

I met both constructions in quite respectable texts. Is it a matter of taste, or of a shade of meaning?
9
votes
2answers
5k views

The word “times” instead of “multiplied by”

A shorthand English word for 3 multiplied by 4 is: 3 times 4 I am aware that this comes from spoken language as in "we have 3 four times", a version I know from my native language as well. I would ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

How do you read the differential mark aloud?

How do you read the differential mark?
8
votes
2answers
2k views

“Assume something be” or “Assume something is”?

I am writing a scientific paper. I am not sure about the usage of "assume." Should I say "Let us assume x is real," or should I say "Let us assume x be real"?
7
votes
2answers
787 views

Should one write Abelian, Noetherian, Artinian by a capital or not?

Which one is the correct way to write abstract algebra? Let A be a Noetherian ring. or Let A be a noetherian ring. I guess the cases Abelian/abelian, Artinian/artinian behaves similarly.
7
votes
2answers
5k views

Exist vs exists in mathematics

Are there any rules about when to say exist and when to say exists in mathematics? For example, both these sentences appear in a book of mine: There exist αi in I such that xn = Σ αi xi. There ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

What is a non-prime number greater than 1 called in English?

I know that this a math question, but as it is really a very basic math concept I think any English user would know it, and it must be more related to English than knowing the math. We call a number ...
6
votes
5answers
608 views

Arithmetic expressions: singular or plural?

Five and two make/makes seven. Five times two is/are ten. Five minus two leave/leaves three. Which ones are correct? Could someone explain the logic behind them?
6
votes
1answer
744 views

How to pronounce decimals?

Something like: 0.1 0.23 0.999 How to pronounce them correctly in English?
6
votes
2answers
115 views

polynomial time in?

Related to exponential in terms of? (nonetheless different from it): Assume that you have an algorithm (producing gizmos) whose inputs are three numbers t, d, and h, which are interpreted by a human ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

How to describe a sample of one person?

Statistically, how to describe a theory making from one's own experience and haven't been tested by others? A sample of one? A one-person sample? Googling both phrases doesn't yield any meaningful ...
5
votes
9answers
3k views

How to read “1 + (-2) = -1” and “1 - 2 = -1”

How to read this to others, so they can write it down just by listening? 1 + (-2) = -1 Also: 1 - 2 = -1 I want to know the differences.
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Understand (may not): The students may not borrow more than 3 books in one month

The librarian said: The students may not borrow more than 3 books in one month. So, Is there a possibility for students to borrow 4 books per month? and why?
5
votes
3answers
6k views

Minimum of a negative value

What is the best way to call the smallest value (absolute value, |x|) of x if all x are negative? If we call it minimum, then it could be meaning the biggest absolute value... Addendum: I am ...
5
votes
4answers
10k views

Difference between “faster than” and “as fast as”

I want to say that, speed-of-A = (7/4)* speed-of-B. The two sentences that I can think of are: A runs 7/4 times faster than B. A runs 7/4 times as fast as B. I'm told that 1st version is incorrect. ...
5
votes
2answers
6k views

Is there a short form of “greater than or equal to” (≥)

From this question I know that when mixing "greater than" (>) and "equal to" (=) the correct expression to say is "greater than or equal to"(>=). However, I remember that my math teacher, when writing ...
5
votes
2answers
284 views

How do you express any radical root of a number?

I'm writing a reference for my piece of code, and one of the sentences is bugging me. The line I'm trying to express is something like: The value is raised to the power of the reciprocal of x. Did ...
5
votes
2answers
488 views

Is there a standard way to read aloud fractions?

Common fractions have standard English equivalents, e.g.: "One half" for 1/2 "Three quarters" for 3/4 But is there a preferred way to read aloud non-standard fractions? The closest way I know of is ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Can “multiply” be a noun?

Can Multiply be used as noun, such as in "matrix multiply"? I heard of this from some Americans. Or should it be "matrix multiplication" instead?
5
votes
1answer
213 views

“calculus” and “the calculus” - what's the difference?

Example: Now, if you picked up the book and looked through it, the first thing you'd notice is that it was presented in the imposing format that the ancient mathematician Euclid had used in his ...
5
votes
1answer
135 views

Problem of abstracting two things into one

As I am having some new options to describe one of my earlier post regarding to the following two constructions making into one sentence, I want to post this once again with my options. If I say main ...
5
votes
4answers
237 views

Should I use ratio, rate, fold, or increase?

The amounts of ingredients a, b and c in A (solution) were 1, 2 and 3, respectively. I have prepared B, C and D solutions with the ingredients as below. The amounts were multiplied by 1.5 for ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

How to express logarithms verbally?

I'm preparing for the job interview. One of the topics I'm studing is algorithms analysis, which uses so called Big O notation. So, the problem is, I actually don't know how to properly pronounce ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

What does “for ten percent of the time” mean?

There is a sentence: The study has also found that being sad for ten percent of the time is actually good for you. Let's face it. We can't be happy all the time. I don't understand the meaning of "...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

“10-cm square” is OK?

I'd like to say that we need to draw a square of which each edge length is 10 cm (i.e., 100 square cm). What is the simplest way to represent such shape? Is the following sentence makes sense? We ...
4
votes
2answers
841 views

What do we call these two parts of the s-curve?

I'm translating a text where a 4-parameter dose-response log curve is fitted to experimentally obtained data. The text says: The obtained dose-response curve (S-shaped) should contain points on the ...
4
votes
2answers
724 views

“1 + 1 should equal 2” or “1 + 1 should equal to 2”; which one is correct?

Which of the following is correct? 1 + 1 should equal 2. 1 + 1 should equal to 2. "equal" or "equal to"?
4
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the right term to indicate the opposite of the math operation distribution?

I am studying math, and there's a term I don't know how to express, I just know that is the opposite of the operation of distribution of terms in an algebraic expression. For example, from the basic ...
4
votes
1answer
67 views

A kids-friendly, nontechnical alternative to the term “arithmetic operations”?

The term "arithmetic operations" from basic grammar school mathematics is highly formal and technical in my ears. In my native Danish language it translates into: The arithmetic operations = De ...
4
votes
2answers
893 views

“mixing in the 1:1 proportion” or “mixing in the proportion of 1:1” or..?

How does one go about decribing proportions? The blank solution was prepared by mixing an aliquot of water with 2-mercaptoethanol-containing loading buffer in the 1:1 proportion. Or The blank ...
4
votes
2answers
405 views

how do pronounce assignment = in math or programming?

I know you pronounce equality == in if(x == 5) this way If x equals to 5 . . . But how do you utter it in a coding context (assignment); i.e. = in x=5 ? maybe something like: x be assigned to ...
4
votes
3answers
396 views

What is the exact meaning of “3 is not a factor of m or of n”?

3 is not a factor of m or of n. Meaning of the above statement the way I understand it is 3 is not a factor of m or 3 is not a factor of n. I think that I might be wrong because here I suggested an ...
4
votes
3answers
278 views

How square is a square

I've recently heard the follwing sentence in a text for children learning English: The blackboard is square. It got translated to the German equivalent of “the blackboard is quadrilateral”. The ...
4
votes
1answer
62 views

articles in “A game in normal form”

I would like to know why there is no article (say "a") in front of the word "normal" in the phrase A game in normal form? This phrase is standard in game theory.
4
votes
1answer
2k views

“Generalize on/to/for” in mathematical texts?

Suppose I have the following piece of mathematical text: Theorem 1. All natural numbers satisfy ABC. The following theorem generalizes Theorem 1 to the real numbers: Theorem 2. All real numbers ...
4
votes
1answer
118 views

40 percent of X's Y: Is the percentage about X or Y?

Some 40 percent of people's "first memory" happened at an age when it wasn't possible to create memories. Source Context shows the percentage is about the people. The word memory, being singular, ...
3
votes
2answers
979 views

What is the meaning of “raised to some power” in the following sentence?

What is the meaning of "raised to some power" in the following sentence? In its most simple and basic form, a moment is the product of the distance to some point, raised to some power, multiplied ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

Is “to clamp” the best term for restricting a numerical value to a range?

One of the definitions of "to clamp" is, according to wiktionary: (transitive) To modify a numeric value so it lies within a specific range. Is "to clamp" the best term for this? It sounds a bit ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

extrapolate vs conjecture

Are these verbs can used interchangeably in the sense of "to guess based on some information". The remains are conjectured to be thousands of years old. He conjectured that the company would ...